This compliance note aims to clarify flexibility in evidence types versus flexibility in compliance.
We are aware that not everything given to Assessors will be in the precise format or of the exact type as set out in the relevant Technical Manual. BREEAM allows for flexibility in the evidence that can be provided but does not allow for flexibility on the Assessment Criteria. Within the QA process, deviations from the technical requirements of the program cannot be considered. If compliance is being claimed then such claims must be backed by robust evidence demonstrating that claim, and that evidence can come in a variety of different forms. Acceptance of the alternative evidence is solely the discretion of the BREEAM USA Technical team.
If the Assessor believes that the aim of the assessment issue is fully met by means other than strict compliance with the defined criteria, they should send in a technical question to the Technical team for consideration before submitting for QA. The technical question submission should include all relevant details, including why the Assessor believes the alternative approach or evidence supports the aim of the issue. Response times for Technical questions and the contact details for the Technical team are available on the Assessor Portal. If the deviation from the technical requirements is accepted, the corresponding confirmation email must be submitted as evidence for certification.